Countrywide Financial cancelled a client relations event for its top correspondent lenders after the Wall Street Journal put a bright light on the ritzy plans, which included rooms for approximately 30 bankers at the Ritz in Avon, Colorado.
A Countrywide spokesman, referring to the planned ski trip, said the company had hosted similar meetings with business partners and clients for years, but that "in light of recent events, we have decided to cancel all such gatherings for the remainder of the year."
Look, we're not here to blindly defend an industry known for its excesses. HW readers know that we don't pull punches when it comes to something that needs to be punched. But it seems to us like Countrywide may be facing a damned if you do/damned if you don't sort of situation here; business development isn't free. It isn't usually even cheap. Not to say that this was a particularly great way to lose money: a better question might have been why Countrywide was willing to fork out dollars for business development in the correspondent lending space to begin with How many major players are still funding correspondent operations, anyway?